The crazy system of government that is Israel, is…well…still crazy.
After four elections in two years, Israel still doesn’t have a winner.
Current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remains the caretaker prime minister until the mess gets sorted out.
The election that was held in March didn’t fix the impasse, so now a new party leader is being given a shot to form a new governing coalition.
I am not going to even try and explain Israel’s system of choosing a prime minister, but here is the latest news as reported by The New York Times:
“Yair Lapid, the centrist leader of the Israeli opposition, was asked Wednesday to try to form a coalition government after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu failed to do so by a Tuesday deadline.
Mr. Lapid has 28 days to persuade a majority of the 120-seat Parliament to support him after the president, Reuven Rivlin, gave him the mandate to begin coalition negotiations.
If he cannot cobble together a government, the country could face another election this summer, its fifth general election in a little more than two years. Until there is a new government, Mr. Netanyahu stays on as caretaker prime minister.”
And we thought our election system was messed up here in America. In Israel, a party has to get the permission of the president to form a new government.
Parliamentary systems aren’t exactly known for being orderly and easy to comprehend, so at least here in America, the system of government is logical and mostly easy to understand.
The Israeli election has become a referendum on Prime Minister Netanyahu because of corruption charges that have been brought against him.
Coalitions in the Knesset are being formed amongst unlikely bedfellows in the hope that they can kick Netanyahu out of power, a day his opponents have been dreaming of for years.
The attorney general of Israel has filed charges against Bibi for supposedly taking bribes and discussing legislation with the head of a news service in Israel, which would have given him a competitive advantage. Netanyahu eventually voted against the legislation. The story should be over, but his opponents are swarming like sharks around him.
Prime Minister Netanyahu has been a rock-solid ally of both the United States and President Trump. He also stood up to the Obama administration, which tried to cut the Israelis off at every pass.
The Israeli elections have ramifications for not only the Middle East, but for the United States as well.
Netanyahu has been a staunch defender of the West against terrorist threats. He was a close ally of President Trump, and stood tall against President Obama when he was in the White House.
Obama sought to actively derail Israeli security plans at every turn. He made a deal with Iran, which did nothing to end the terrorist nation’s nuclear weapons program. The deal actually emboldened the radical Islamist regime to continue to fund terrorism in the region. Iran would like nothing more than to wipe Israel off the map.
In response, the prime minister publicly rebuked Obama’s deal. He said, “Far-reaching concessions were made in areas that were supposed to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons … Iran will receive hundreds of billions of dollars, with which it can fuel its terror machine, and pursue its aggression and terror in the region and the world.”
Obama described working with Netanyahu as being akin to working with a rival. Obama said that “dealing with Bibi” — Netanyahu’s nickname — “is like dealing with the Republicans.”
Bibi took his opposition against Obama to the United States Congress. In his speech to members of Congress, Netanyahu said, “This is a bad deal — a very bad deal. We’re better off without it.”
The Obama administration responded by spending taxpayer dollars to defeat Netanyahu at the polls. The Washington Times reported that during the 2015 Israeli Elections, the Obama administration dispatched resources of the Federal government to defeat Bibi.
And now Netanyahu’s days as prime minister could be coming to an end. If they are in fact over, he deserves a debt of gratitude from Americans for being our defender in the Middle East.